Sales of Apple’s latest iPhone 15 lineup has taken the Korean smartphone market by storm, vastly outperforming its iPhone 14 predecessor in Samsung’s home nation. This remarkable feat comes as a stark contrast to the tepid reception of the iPhone 15 in China and Japan (via The Korea Herald).
According to the report, sales of the iPhone 15 models in Korea skyrocketed by 41.9% in the first month following their official release on October 13 compared to the iPhone 14 series launch a year earlier. This surge in popularity is particularly evident for the smaller and more affordable iPhone 15, notes the report, with sales more than doubling during the same period. The high-end iPhone 15 Pro Max also experienced significant growth, with sales climbing by 42.3% compared to the iPhone 14 Pro Max.
This success in Korea is particularly noteworthy given the country’s strong preference for Samsung smartphones as a show of national pride and patriotism. Samsung has long dominated the Korean market, holding over 70% of the market share. However, Apple’s aggressive marketing strategies and the introduction of new services seem to be resonating with Korean consumers. As reported earlier, the iPhone is quickly picking up popularity among Generation Z and young millennials at the cost of Samsung’s market share.
Several factors are contributing to the iPhone 15’s success in Korea:
- Cash incentives from telecom carriers: Telecom companies are offering hefty cash incentives of up to 450,000 won (approximately $347.20) to encourage customers to purchase new iPhones.
- Introduction of Apple Pay and call recording apps: Apple’s launch of its mobile payment service, Apple Pay, in February and SK Telecom’s release of a call recording service for iPhones through its AI app, A., have been well-received by Korean consumers.
- Growing preference for Apple smartphones: Korean consumers are increasingly gravitating towards Apple smartphones, with the iPhone 15’s strong performance further solidifying this trend.
Despite the iPhone 15’s impressive sales performance, industry experts believe that Apple is unlikely to launch future iPhone models earlier in Korea due to Samsung’s continued dominance in the market. However, the iPhone 15’s success suggests that Apple is making gains in chipping away at Samsung’s stronghold and gaining a foothold in the Korean smartphone landscape.
The iPhone 15’s success in Korea is a testament to Apple’s ability to adapt and cater to the preferences of local consumers. By introducing new services and offering attractive incentives, Apple has managed to make inroads into a local market long dominated by its historic opponent in the smartphone industry.